With cold weather comes a whole new exciting host of activities that you can do with your children. While it does require a bit of extra effort to get your family all bundled up to play outside in the snow, it is definitely worth it! Times like these are perfect for children to make core memories that they will keep with them forever.
Not sure where to start in the snow with your children? The team at Sawyer has you covered. We’ve outlined our favorite things to do in the snow with our families, including great snow games to play. Plus, we know that not every child wants to play outside in the cold, so we included some snow crafts that you can do to celebrate the weather while staying warm inside.
Snow activities for kids
Things to do in the snow
Did you know that children who play outdoors develop stronger gross motor skills, become more ecologically aware, and get a better night’s sleep, among many other benefits? Outdoor play helps children become more independent and establish good habits that last a lifetime. When the weather gets chilly, encourage your child to get outside (in the proper attire) and explore.
Here are some of our favorite things to do in the snow with our families.
- Play! This is a simple one, but just going outside as a family and having fun in the snow is one of the best things you can do. Let your children lead the way with what they feel comfortable doing in the snow. Then, let the fun follow!
- Build a snowman. A few years ago, your child might have been singing “Do you want to build a snowman?” on repeat, but have they actually done it before? Even if they have, it’s a winter tradition for a reason. Building a snowman is a great snow activity for kids of all ages.
- Construct an igloo. If your child loves building blanket forts, LEGO castles, or Minecraft villages, they will probably love building an igloo in the snow. Depending on their age, the architecture might need some adult guidance and support, but try to let your child feel like they are the project manager.
- Paint in the snow. Fill up squirt bottles (or water guns) with water and 2-3 drops of food dye. Then, let your child make the snow their canvas! They can write their name, draw designs or pictures, or even use it to play games like tic tac toe or hopscotch.
- Go sledding. Grab the sleds or anything flat you have around and find the closest hill. Make sure it is safe (the hill flattens out and there are no cars around) and then let your children fly. They will have a blast and won’t even realize that they are tiring themselves out sliding down the hill and climbing back up. Check out some of our favorite games to play while sledding to keep the fun going!
Older children might gravitate more towards snow games and other competitions but younger children can benefit from playing games as well. When children compete, they gain important skills and it actually helps them remember more, too!
Try some of these fun snow games with your family
- Snowy scavenger hunt. Set up a winter scavenger hunt by writing down a list of items your children need to find in the yard or park. Some examples: 4 pinecones, 5 sticks, and 1 lost mitten. Depending on the number of children and their ages, you can pair them up so everyone has a buddy. The winner gets to pick the movie that night!
- Snowball fight. The original snow game: a snowball fight! Divide your family into 2 teams and have at it! Just make sure if you have little ones that they are safe and having fun, too.
- Match the tracks. This is a fun snowy take on hide and seek. The seeker stays in one place with their eyes closed and counts to 20. The hiders find a place to hide during that time. Then, the seeker must follow the tracks to find the hiders!
- Snowball toss. Paint a circle with the colored water, use a hula hoop, or draw a bulls-eye on cardboard. Then, have your children compete to toss snowballs into the center. Make it harder by moving them further away or making the target smaller. Assign point values to give them a chance to practice math, too!
- Pin the nose on the snowman. Like pin the tail on the donkey, except with a snowman! Give each child a carrot and a blindfold and let them try to place the carrot where the snowman’s nose should go.
Celebrating snow can also happen indoors. Not every child can, or wants to, go outside and play in the snow. Plus, even children who like being out in the cold need to come in at some point. These snow crafts are great to help your children stay excited about the snow while staying warm and cozy inside.
- Natural art. If you did the winter scavenger hunt or if your child was outside a bit before, have them collect some pieces of nature that they can find in the snow. Then, use those elements for a beautiful mixed media art piece. They can make a snowy day or another winter wonderland scene. See more nature crafts for kids in our guide.
- Snowman in a jar. Start by having your child paint a mason jar white, which is the body for their snowman. Then, they can decorate with paints, felt, ribbon, buttons, and more! Encourage them to make it as unique as possible. Maybe they want to make a snow-dog, bunny, or family member.
- Photo snow globes. Cut a photo of your child out so no background shows. Then, attach that photo to cardboard or cardstock paper so it stands up straight. Put the photo on another piece of paper that has been cut in a circle. Add some fake snow and glitter and then cover with a clear, plastic cup. Glue the cup to the bottom, sealing it to create a snow globe where your child’s picture is front & center!
Looking for more winter activities for kids, including indoors, outdoors, and everything in between? Check out our full guide! Plus, be sure to check out the wonderful classes that educators offer every day on Sawyer. Let’s make this winter the best one yet!